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186 million watch 2018 Eurovision Song Contest

23 May 2018

The Eurovision Song Contest (ESC), the world’s biggest live music event, was seen by over 185 million viewers in 2018. The 3 live shows from Lisbon, Portugal on 8, 10 and 12 May reached around 186 million people across 42 markets*

The 2018 Grand Final of the Eurovision Song Contest achieved, on average, around the same TV audience share as 2017 of 35.8% - more than double the average prime-time viewing share for the same group of channels (15.3%).

Winning country Israel delivered its largest audience since 2005 on KAN. An average 1 million viewers watched the Grand Final, accounting for 50.9% of Israeli TV viewing.

2nd placed Cyprus had its best ever result and its highest audience on record (since 2003), with 250 thousand viewers accounting for 77.4% of Cypriot TV viewing.

Germany (ARD) saw the highest average viewing figures for the 8th consecutive year (7.7m). The UK's audience on BBC One was up 5% on 2017 with 7 million viewers on average tuning in. While France (France 2) had the highest viewing figures since 2009, up 10% on last year to 5.2 million.

Spain's LA1 delivered the largest increase in viewers year on year, almost doubling its 2017 audience to deliver 6.4m viewers (42.2% share). This made the country the third biggest market overall and RTVE's biggest ESC audience since 2008.

Host country Portugal's Grand Final audience was up 10% on 2017. 1.5 million Portuguese tuned in making it their biggest ESC audience since 2008 and giving host broadcaster RTP a 36.4% audience share.

Iceland once again delivered the largest viewing share of all the markets (95.3%), despite its entry not making it to the final for a fourth consecutive year.

The Eurovision Song Contest once again highlighted the ability of public service media to connect with young audiences. On average, 43.1% of 15-24 year olds watching TV in 42 markets enjoyed the Grand Final which is four times higher than the broadcast channels average of 10.6%.

Viewing share is also around four times higher than the broadcast channels average among Children (4-15 years olds; 35.1% / 8.3%) and Young Adults (25-34 year olds; 35.4% / 9.5%).

In addition, there were 6.6 million live streaming sessions in 198 territories across the 3 shows on the official ESC YouTube channel, an increase of 10% compared to last year. 2.2 million unique viewers tuned in for the Grand Final on YouTube.

The Grand Final of the 63rd Eurovision Song Contest was also broadcast by 13 EBU Radio organizations.

*Source: Results produced by EBU and based on Eurodata TV’s and relevant partners’ data


Relevant links and documents


Claire Rainford

Head of Corporate Communications